Morphy Auctions Sells Gun That Fired First Shot At Bunker Hill For $492,000

Revolutionary War Musket Belonged To Private John Simpson (1748-1825) Of Deerfield, N.H.

November 8, 2019

Morphy Auctions has sold the Dutch flintlock musket that fired the first shot at the 1775 Battle of Bunker Hill for $492,000. Arguably the most significant, positively identified Revolutionary War long arm in existence, the .79-caliber gun was originally the property of Private John Simpson (1748-1825) of Deerfield, N.H., and had remained in his family by direct descent for the past 244 years. The price includes buyer’s premium, and the sale took place on Oct. 23.
As history recounts, Simpson fired an unauthorized first shot as the Redcoats advanced on Breed’s Hill (erroneously reported as Bunker Hill) against the order of Col. William Prescott, who instructed colonial troops, “Don’t shoot until you see the whites of their eyes!”
“The Simpson gun symbolizes one of the most important battles leading to American independence and came to auction with impeccable family provenance and supportive documentation,” said Morphy Auctions’ founder and president, Dan Morphy. “Bidders knew there was no question about this famous gun’s background and authenticity.”
The buyer’s identity has not yet been released.
Image courtesy of Morphy Auctions.


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